E. Jean Carroll claims Trump defamed her again, underscoring his mockery of the justice system

Donald Trump has spent most of the past seven years questioning the legitimacy of the justice system. He repeatedly called scrutiny of him and his allies unfair and decried the beliefs of his allies, culminating in a remarkably partisan record on pardons. He used the phrase “witch hunt” and “hoax” hundreds of times. He attacked judges, juries, prosecutors and investigators, in one case drawing a reprimand from his own Supreme Court nominee.

But even by his standards, his conduct after E. Jean Carroll innovated. Not content with merely criticizing the judge and jury, Trump at a CNN town hall two weeks ago doubled down on the very kinds of statements the jury had previously found to be libelous against him.

And he could still have to answer for it in court. A lawyer for Carroll said Monday evening that she would seek further damages.

Initial comments, in October 2022, led the jury to award Carroll $3 million for defamation (in addition to $2 million for sexual abuse for which the jury found Trump liable). Carroll’s attorney said she would seek at least $10 million for the final round, saying Trump “has persisted in maliciously defaming Carroll once again” and is “undeterred by the court’s verdict.” jury”.

It’s hard to argue with that last part. And Trump responded by doubling down on Tuesday morning, making remarks similar to the defamatory comments he posted on social media in October and posting them again on social media.

The new complaint came in a separate case, which Carroll filed in 2019 against Trump. That case got bogged down in legal questions about whether Trump can be held liable for statements he made about Carroll while he was president.

Regardless, Trump’s comments at the May 10 CNN event and on Truth Social on Tuesday are remarkably similar to those in Trump’s October 12 statement that Carroll cited in his original 2022 complaint.

If he knows Carroll

Original complaint (the one that resulted in $3 million in damages being awarded to Carroll)“I don’t know this woman.”

CNN town hall“This woman, I don’t know her. I never met her. I have no idea who she is. “I have no idea who she is. I don’t know who this woman is.

Social Truth on Tuesday: “I don’t know E. Jean Carroll, I’ve never met or touched her.”

On the fact that it is a ‘scam’ and a ‘work’ of sorts

Initial complaint: “This ‘Ms. Bergdorf Goodman case is a complete scam. “It’s a complete rip-off.”

CNN town hall: “It’s a crap job.” “It’s a rigged deal.”

Social Truth on Tuesday: “A TOTAL SCAM.”

On the fact that it is a “lie” and a “hoax”

Initial complaint: “It’s a hoax and a lie.”

CNN town hall: “It’s a fake story.” (He said it twice.)

Social Truth on Tuesday: “Her Fake, Made Up Story, which she wrote in a book.” “The Carroll case is part of the Democrats’ playbook to tarnish my name and my person, as is the now fully debunked Russia, Russia, Russia hoax.”

Carroll is not his type

Initial complaint: “This woman is not my type!”

CNN town hall“She was about 60 years old. And it was like 22, 23 years ago. (The alleged incident occurred in the mid-1990s, when Carroll was in his early 50s. In his deposition, Trump also confused Carroll in a photo with his then-wife Marla Maples, undermining his claims that she was not his type.)

How some of them compare directly is up for debate. Carroll’s age comment was more oblique than “not my type”. And Trump layered his comments about not knowing Carroll by acknowledging the encounter depicted in the photo. (Carroll’s complaint said they had “met at least once before and had long traveled in the same New York media circles.”)

It’s unclear how those comments might play out in the separate case of 2019, which, as noted, was slow. Lawyer Renato Mariotti REMARK after the town hall that Carroll could sue for the comments, but that “in practice it would be difficult for her to establish additional damages after a jury verdict compensated her for the damages she suffered. suffered so far”.

Yet there is no doubt that Trump opens by repeating his claims about Carroll, given that they have been established as defamatory.

And more than anything, he deliberately mocks the justice system. Which, it has become clear as his legal danger has widened, he likely thinks he is worth the financial price he might have to pay in civil litigation.


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